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The Impact Entrepreneur

Mike Flynn takes you behind closed doors and invites you into his conversations with game changing entrepreneurs. These conversations go beyond success and failure, beyond product or service or platform, to uncover what is really behind the decisions these entrepreneurs make and what IMPACT they hope to have in the world.
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Now displaying: September, 2016
Sep 26, 2016

Aaron Walker is a businessman and life coach who has inspired many through his leadership, mentorship and consistent pursuit of excellence. 35 years of entrepreneurship and marriage have given Aaron a wealth of valuable experience. Aaron is currently on his twelfth venture as an entrepreneur – that’s right, twelfth. He is the founder of View From the Top, a coaching service and community that aims to help men live a life of success and significance.

 

Aaron is an authority on leadership and what it takes to lead a holistic, successful life. In this interview, Aaron discusses how grit and determination have paid off, how he helps ordinary men become extraordinary, how to live a successful and significant life, and the power of Masterminds and community.

 

“I’m helping ordinary men become extraordinary, and we do it in a holistic fashion. We don’t do it just in business and we don’t do it just in life. We do it in both, because I think they’re inseparable.”

 

Retirement doesn’t agree with Aaron. He has retired three different times – sometimes because of success, sometimes because of traumatic events – but not working always makes him (and his wife) unhappy. After his most recent retirement, Aaron was invited by Dan Miller to speak at an Innov8 event.

 

“I’m having more fun today than I’ve ever had in my life.”

 

Before Aaron was in a car accident, he was very successful. However, the accident helped him realize that, while he had great success, he had no significance. Nobody cared about his success but him and his family, but he realized he wanted to leave a legacy of people happy to have known him.

 

“I don’t believe in failure. I believe you either succeed or you learn.”

 

For Aaron, success means:

  • Choosing his schedule
  • Having and engaging family and meaningful relationships
  • Having a clear conscience with every transaction that he does

 

Aaron also believes that you can easily define significance: it is meeting the needs of others. Success has something to do with you, significance has something to mean for others.

 

“I want to learn to be content, but not complacent.”

 

Relationships are everything. Literally. For example, Aaron is in the construction business, and he formed an alliance of sorts with his competitors. By pooling resources, they all saved money – and in the process, they also support a number of local tradesmen. Now all of the people in the alliance are more successful, and they’re friends.

 

“When you start helping, you start sharing, then what it does is it drops the veil and everybody starts helping. There’s enough business for everybody, but we have this mentality that the pie is only so big, but there’s nothing further from the truth.”

 

Aaron brought a gift for the Impact Entrepreneur audience. It is a personal assessment that dives into your identity, ideals, relationship, career and faith. Answering the questions can help you think, and help you realize what it is that you want. Go to ViewFromTheTop.com/Impact to pick up your own copy of the personal assessment, and hopefully they will help you live more successfully and significantly.

 

I am extremely thankful to Aaron, or Big A as he is sometimes called, for sharing so much with us all. He is an incredibly generous person, and he has a lot of valuable lessons to teach the Impact Entrepreneur audience.



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This episode is brought to you by SY Partners and Unstuck, helping you make a change by identifying the things holding you up. Their new program “Life Courses” are based on decades of learning about what inspires people to change. It is created by SYPartners, a transformation company that helps individuals, teams, and organizations become the best version of themselves, so they can create massive positive impact in business and society.

To start making your change, visit Life Courses by Unstuck on the web.

 

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We are also brought to you by the Lawton Marketing Group. A full service advertising and design agency serving companies and entrepreneurs at all levels. The are your one stop shop for all your web site, logo, social media, print, app design and reputable management needs.

Visit LawtonMG.com for more info.

 

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Don’t be a podcast junkie…

 

Resources:


Production & Development for The Impact Entrepreneur Show by Podcast Masters

Sep 19, 2016

Today I have the 2nd episode in my interview series on leadership, and it’s a great one. AmyK Hutchens is an incredibly accomplished speaker, author, trainer and business strategist. Her latest book, The Secrets Leaders Keep, is an Amazon bestseller, and it resonates with me on a lot of levels.

 

AmyK is a catalyst for producing sustainable solutions to a leader’s most pressing challenges, and more than 45,000 executives in nine countries have benefited from her keen insight and intuitive understanding of the issues leaders face.

 

Before entering the corporate world, AmyK was an elementary school teacher. As a student and then as a teacher, she was inspired by a 5th grade teacher to be curious and love learning.

 

“For everything that I do, whether it’s a corporate job or going out on my own, she taught me to be curious, and then she taught me how to help other students be curious, and that stayed with me.”

 

When AmyK was 14, her 5th grade teacher taught her the concept of guided choices. “Guided choices was really about giving people the freedom to explore their own passions.” It taught AmyK to follow her passion, identify where there is a need in the world, and identify the point at which her passion and that need intersect with her skillset.

 

A couple months ago, when AmyK was giving a talk, she was approached and asked why she gives so many of her tools away. Her answer? “Because I have so many more.”

 

“I could train and I could speak every single day until the day that i die, and I would still probably touch a very small percentage of the population on this planet. So, I just believe in playing bigger and finding a bigger stage, and sharing it.”

 

In The Secrets Leaders Keep, AmyK shares many secrets from the perspective of 14 leaders. She shared some of the most common secrets that we can all relate to and learn from:

  • “The most common thing I heard was, ‘Well, it’s lonely at the top.’” It wouldn’t be if the people at the top started talking to each other, because they all have the same issues.
  • Imposter Syndrome is a common issue for entrepreneurs. “Imposter syndrome is when entrepreneurs experience feelings of inadequacy, or chronic self doubt, that persist even when results indicate that the opposite is true.”
  • The Comparison Condition is one of the worst forms of self-abuse, especially for entrepreneurs, because people are constantly looking at the people around them, and thinking they should be there.
  • Choosing to live a life in a state of self-doubt is really selfish, and prevents you from showing up in the world.
  • Leave the ‘hood. “We have to let go of our neighbors, our initial community, to actually maximize and reach our potential.”

 

AmyK helps entrepreneurs overcome Imposter Syndrome and The Comparison Condition: “Stay focused on your journey. Stay on your path, and know that you’re going to make mistakes, and everybody else is making mistakes too.”

 

“Every single day you need to wake up and say, ‘There is room for me in this world.’ I don’t need to be competitive, I don’t need to hoard, I don’t need to be filled with fear. There is room for my gifts and talents for me to play today.”

 

AmyK is the Queen of Questions, and she invented a business adage: “Change your thinking, change your behavior, change your result.” You can’t get a different result if you’re thinking in the same way, so it starts with thinking, “and the very best way to raise the level of critical thinking in a dialog is to ask the bigger, better, bolder question.”

 

AmyK shared some of her favorite questions:

  • How do we define an ideal client relationship?
  • How do we define ideal performance and productivity?
    • Or, what does an A Player look like for our organization?

 

AmyK discusses how, in 90 seconds, you can go from tight ass to triumphant. Start by taking a deep breath and honestly answering four questions:

  1. What would Calm do now?
  2. What would Grace do now?
  3. What would Wisdom do now?
  4. What’s the ideal response if my sincerest intent is to help, not hurt?

 

AmyK’s next writing project is The Secrets that He Keeps. It’s not a self-help book, but a collection of fictional stories, similar to the stories in The Secrets Leaders Keep. “What we’re hoping is that men will read it so that they’re not so hard on themselves, and that women will read it so that they will be more understanding and have a depth of compassion in a relationship with their guy.”

 

“Have compassion and start asking questions.”

 

I had a blast speaking with the Queen of Questions, AmyK Hutchens, about leadership, learning and success. I highly encourage everyone to go out and pick up a copy of her book, The Secrets Leaders Keep.

 

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This episode is brought to you by SY Partners and Unstuck, helping you make a change by identifying the things holding you up. Their new program “Life Courses” are based on decades of learning about what inspires people to change. It is created by SYPartners, a transformation company that helps individuals, teams, and organizations become the best version of themselves, so they can create massive positive impact in business and society.

 

To start making your change, visit Life Courses by Unstuck on the web.

 

--

 

We are also brought to you by the Lawton Marketing Group. A full service advertising and design agency serving companies and entrepreneurs at all levels. The are your one stop shop for all your web site, logo, social media, print, app design and reputable management needs.

 

Visit LawtonMG.com for more info.

 

--

 

Don’t be a podcast junkie…

Resources:


Production & Development for The Impact Entrepreneur Show by Podcast Masters

Sep 12, 2016

This week I have a powerful conversation with Jocko Willink about ownership and leadership. Jocko is a retired Navy SEAL, extreme leadership expert and co-author of Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win.

 

Jocko retired from the United States Navy SEALs in 2010, with a Silver Star and Bronze Star, and formed the company Echelon Front with Leif Babin, who served under Jocko in the Battle of Ramadi. Echelon Front offers training services that help build, train and lead high-performance winning teams. Jocko and Leif also co-authored Extreme Ownership as a leadership manual.

 

Mentorship is important as a Navy SEAL and a business leader. Jocko embraces mentorship from anyone with something to teach him. He realized early on that he needed to understand something in order to make sense of it.

 

“When you’re working with businesses and working with leaders, you can’t just tell them, ‘here’s the problem and here’s the solution,’ because every problem is different. There’s going to be nuances in everything, and so you have to take these principles that you learn and apply those principles. But you have to apply them not as a mechanic, but as an artist.

 

Jocko relates the process of reaching understanding to a concept called Commander’s Intent, which describes the overall goals, purpose, strategy, and desired end state. A German general once said that the Commander’s Intent should not be added on to the end of a briefing, but replace the briefing entirely.

 

“Knowing where you’re heading, and what the end state you’re looking for is, and what the intent of the operation or the mission is, it should certainly be enough.”

 

Jocko’s military career and his current entrepreneurial lifestyle requires constantly adapting to new and different people, with new and different personalities. He doesn’t have a very large tool kit for adapting to different personalities, but he has effective tools:

 

  • Listen.
  • “Tool number two is what you’re going to take out of your box after you’ve listened.”

 

 

Jocko is a champion of Extreme Ownership, the central concept and title of his book, and he believes that it is the number one characteristic of a high performance individual or team. “The reason that extreme ownership is the most important characteristic is because, if you don’t take ownership over what’s happening in your world, how can you change any of it? ... If you face the reality that what’s going on in your world actually is your fault, and if anyone can fix it it’s you, then you can actually take action.”

 

There’s always other things in the world to blame, but there’s only one you can fix, and that’s you. Taking Extreme Ownership can be simple:

  1. Acknowledge that things aren’t going the way you want them to go
  2. Identify the elements that play into the way things are
  3. Take action to fix what you aren’t happy with

 

Ownership is integral to leadership, and to Jocko leadership is what makes or breaks a mission. Leadership isn’t just about taking orders – it’s about building a two-way relationship with trust and communication.

 

“My goal with every leader that I ever worked for, whether they were horrible or they were awesome, my goal was always the same: to develop a relationship with them where they trusted me and they let me do what I want.” If it’s en egomaniac, Jocko strokes their ego. If it’s a great leader, then out of the gate you are working with them, building a relationship and developing trust.

 

You don’t need to be in charge to take ownership. In most situations, whatever your boss is trying to make happen, you’re the one doing it. Do it the right way (or the wrong way), and you can have a massive amount of influence over it. “If my boss has a vision, I’m going to take ownership and make it happen, and I’m going to build trust. And when they tell me to do something that doesn’t make sense, I’m going to have the relationship to say, ‘Hey boss, this doesn’t make sense right here.’”

 

Jocko shares stories about some of the times things didn’t go well, but he always holds on to the will to win. “The will to win isn’t a short-term thing. The will to win is a deep-seated desire for a long-term end state. You have to recognize that, along the way, you’re going to take wins and you’re going to take losses.” What’s going to trip you up when you fail is when your ego doesn’t allow you to take ownership of the failure.

 

Success is often driven by ego, and Jocko embraces that. We should want to do well, and we should care how we perform. “Where it goes sideways is where the ego becomes so big that it no longer thinks it can do any better, no longer can you be corrected, no longer can you be coached, no longer can you change, no longer can you evolve, because your ego thinks you’re already there.”

 

To keep our egos in check, Jocko has a few simple tools:

  1. Keep an open mind
  2. Don’t believe your own hype
  3. Make an honest self-assessment. The way that you make an honest self-assessment is to detach from yourself and look at yourself from an exterior point of view.

 

I’m honored to have gotten to speak with Jocko about his book, his business and his past experiences. He is a powerful speaker, and he has a lot to share about leadership, ownership and success.

 

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This episode is brought to you by SY Partners and Unstuck, helping you make a change by identifying the things holding you up. Their new program “Life Courses” are based on decades of learning about what inspires people to change. It is created by SYPartners, a transformation company that helps individuals, teams, and organizations become the best version of themselves, so they can create massive positive impact in business and society.

 

To start making your change, visit Life Courses by Unstuck on the web.

 

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Download this Episode MP3.


SOME QUESTIONS I ASK:

  • What are some steps Jocko takes to bridge the gap between knowledge and understanding?
  • Is it enough to simply begin with the end in mind in order to get to understanding?
  • How does Jocko adapt to different personalities on the fly?
  • Why is Extreme Ownership the number one characteristic of a high performance individual or team?
  • How does the will to win aid in recovering from a situation that is in essence failure?
  • How does Jocko use The Leader’s Checklist with his fellow SEALS, and how can entrepreneurs adapt this checklist in their businesses?

 

IN THIS EPISODE, YOU WILL LEARN:

  • Why extreme ownership is the number one characteristic of a high performance individual
  • How to build relationships with the leaders around you
  • How aspects of military strategy can improve business strategy
  • How to use your ego as a driver, but keep it in check

 

DON’T BE A PODCAST JUNKIE…

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

Sep 5, 2016

Today’s guest, Kelly Starrett, is a coach, physical therapist, speaker, co-creator of MobiltyWOD.com, and author of two NY Times Best Sellers: Becoming a Supple Leopard & Ready to Run. Kelly recently published his third book, Deskbound.

Kelly started the 27th CrossFit gym in the country, with a private student loan from grad school. “It was a total calculated risk. No one knew this; they didn’t know what this was.“ Kelly thought it would be a great place for his friends to train, and he hoped to pick up skills that would make him a better physiotherapist. The gym evolved into a lot more.

“Then we started solving a problem. We started to see the way people moved … Don’t set up a business, be useful.”

Kelly didn’t have one distinct mentor, but he did have many talented colleagues and inspirations around him. “There’s this constant loop of creativity that doesn’t turn off.”

“Process begets process. For us, the mentorship is that we all feed each other and draft off each other and push each other and nudge each other, and that really is sustainable.”

Kelly’s third book, Deskbound: Standing Up to a Sitting World, was released in April, and it is currently the #1 Best Seller in Exercise & Fitness Injury Prevention on Amazon. Deskbound is a blueprint for living pain free in a sedimentary society. It identifies the epigenetic implications of not moving (pelvic floor dysfunction, jaw clenching, shortened hips, insulin insensitivity) and seeks to structure a solution.

“At some point, there’s going to have to be an intervention that actually works, and we think that this is one of those interventions that’s so simple – i.e. get human beings to be what human beings are, what they’re supposed to do, which is move.”

The book opens with, “The human body is incredibly robust. This is a good thing, if you have a plan for getting organized.” Immediately, you can divide your life into opportunities where you can sit, and opportunities where you don’t have to sit. It becomes optional and non-optional sitting.

The book is trying to encourage readers to adapt the environment around them to force more movement. For example, during this interview, Kelly and I are sitting on the floor. Because of this, we’re already in better metabolic positions. We’re not metabolically active, but we’re taking our hips through the full range of motion and we’re at least obeying the range of motion that the tissues are designed for. “What we’ve done is immediately program a whole bunch more movement in, and all we did was say, ‘Let’s not sit in a chair.’”

If you do find yourself having to sit a lot, you have to have a plan to address the tissue restrictions. The second half of the book provides simple tools to open up tissues that are stiff, restore normal sliding surfaces and regain function.

Kids who stand in school will burn an additional 15-30% more calories daily than kids who don’t, and they even focus better. Kelly’s partner at Texas A&M, Mark Benden, has research showing that kids are gaining about 2 percentage points on their body index every year they sit at school, and what Kelly’s seen is that in two years they’ve actually been able to reverse that trend.

“We have to start playing the long game: just do the right thing, day after day, and pretty soon it really makes massive change.”

Kelly is incredibly passionate about health and healing, and he’s doing great work with his wife at MobilityWOD.com. I’m grateful to Kelly for sharing his passion with the Impact Entrepreneur Show.

 

 

SOME QUESTIONS I ASK:

  • What is the premise of Kelly’s new book, Deskbound?
  • What are some consequences of not being organized?
  • What are physical cues listeners can pay attention to as they’re listening to analyze what they’re doing right now to see if they’re helping or hindering themselves?
  • What can parents do to improve movement in their children’s lives?

IN THIS EPISODE, YOU WILL LEARN:

  • The danger in sedimentary living
  • How we can structure our lives and environments to involve more movement
  • How standing can combat the trend of childhood obesity
  • Why Kelly was drawn to CrossFit in its infancy

DON’T BE A PODCAST JUNKIE…

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

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